Too often I focus on what I don’t like about my life. I don’t like that I have a small apartment. I don’t like that I’m not getting a raise this year. I don’t like that I have issues with food. I don’t like the way my body looks.
This negative thinking has become a source of frustration and disease in my life. Feeling badly about my body causes me to over eat to feel better. Because I am not happy with my living space, I spend money on home goods to make my home prettier – spending money that could have been saved towards a down payment on a house. Frustration over my job makes me feel burned out and less eager to perform above expectations, and I end up doing just enough to get by.
After watching the total devastation as rescue efforts unfold in Haiti over the last couple of days, I find that I can adopt a new attitude of gratefulness. This positive attitude will be healthier for my mind and my body.
Five things I am grateful for right now are-
1. My family has an abundance of food and I never have to worry that my son is going to bed hungry at night. I am in an enviable position that I have to try to figure out how not to eat as much, rather than having to worry about where my next meal is coming from.
2. I have a home with all the luxuries that make life comfortable. In a world where so many are forced to live in shacks and tents I have heat and hot running water. I have air conditioning in the summer. I have a washer and dryer and a dishwasher. I have cable TV. I am blessed.
3. Love is all around me. My husband is amazing in what he is willing to put up with from me. Always patient and kind, even when I am not. My son is the best thing I have ever done. He is still very young but I can see that he is growing into a sweet and compassionate person. My extended family is closely knit and we are always there for one another. My sisters and I would rip anyone to shreds who hurt one of us.
4. Every moment is an opportunity. I can choose to be compassionate to others. I can choose to give 100% dedication to my job. I can choose not to eat the cannolis that are in the break room this morning. I have opportunities all day long to be a better person.
5. I am healthy and alive. I know where my loved ones are and I know that they are healthy and alive. I take this for granted too often, but waking up this morning and seeing so many suffering. Hearing the anguish in the voices of those who can’t get through to their mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, sons and daughters, cousins, aunts and uncles, etc. - I thank God that mine are safe.
So today I have decided not to focus on the things I want to change. Instead for the rest of the day I am going to simply be happy with what I already have.
What are you grateful for today?